Israel Railways "eastern link" is moving beyond the planning stage. The 63 kilometer line was approved by the National Planning and Building Commission back in 2012 but the money only became available recently and work is now in progress to prepare infrastructures. Land is being expropriated and fenced off ahead of work and in the coming few months infrastructures will be moved and works access roads built. Netivei Israel has completed 90% of planning the part of the project that it is responsible for.
The importance of the line that will link Hadera and Lod and includes eight new stations is that it bypasses the Ayalon railway bottleneck in Tel Aviv, just as Road 6 does for the country's highway system. In fact most of the line will run alongside Road 6. At present all lines from north to south pass through the three lines in Tel Aviv. After the Hadera-Lod line is complete passenger traveling, for example, from Haifa to Beersheva will be able to avoid Tel Aviv.
Construction of the new line will be divided between Netivei Israel, which will build the northern section from Hadera to Kfar Saba and Israel Railways, which will build the southern section from Kfar Saba to Lod. The line will include new stations at Airport City and in the Arab towns of Tira and Taibe.
Construction work is scheduled to begin in 2020, but due to the difficult topography and terrain in heavily populated areas, estimates are that the line won't be operational before 2026.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on October 23, 2018
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